Yate Town 1 AFC Totton 3 – Match Report
TRIUMPHANT STAGS DESERVEDLY TAKE THE POINTS AT YATE
Yate Town 1-3 AFC Totton
Attendance – 202 (Approx. 20 Totton)
Stags boss Louis Langdown named the same starting XI that lost to Tiverton seven days ago, although Jack Vallis, Nick Watts and Ashley Jarvis were replaced on the substitutes bench by Dylan Knight, Harry Prisk and new arrival from Fareham Town Liam Kimber.
Just like last week, today’s game got off to a fast and furious pace, with Totton immediately getting on top and earning themselves a corner in the 3rd minute after Neil Williams’ effort was deflected wide. From the resulting corner Nathaniel SHERBORNE lost his marker to head home beyond Harvey Rivers in the Yate goal. The Stags were buoyed by this early goal and came forward with ease, with Curtis Young starting to cause problems again for the opposition defence before finding Sherborne in the area, who volleyed over. The next move involved the tenacious Alfy Whittingham, who picked out Sherborne again in the area but this time The Stags hitman fired a foot over the bar.
Charlie Searle’s first call to action came with 20 minutes on the clock when Jake Slocombe tested him. Searle made a good save but the rebound fell to Luke Bryan, who probably should’ve done better with his chance. A few moments later, Trey Anderson managed to fend off Ian Oliver to search out Bryan in the area, but Harry Medway and Dave Allen formed a yellow wall in front of him and the move broke down. Yate began to have more of the ball as the half wore on, but never really got themselves in a position to trouble Searle. While, in a flurry of action before the break at the other end saw Young make another brilliant run down the right, skipping past a couple of defenders and using his pace to accelerate away from them before searching out Sherborne at the back post, but the ball just evaded The Stags no.9. To end a good half from Totton, Charlie Gunson created the space for himself to take aim at goal but fired over from distance. HT 0-1
Immediately after the break The Stags were back at it again, doubling their lead with 47 minutes on the clock. As Totton swept forward, Charlie GUNSON ran with the ball at his feet and past his marker before firing low and left footed back across the face of goal and into the net as The Stags doubled their lead and it was no less than they deserved. Gunson himself almost doubled his tally, but couldn’t quite steer Adam Wilde’s freekick goalwards. Towards the hour mark, the hosts re-grouped to a degree and began to gain a steady amount of possession in the game, although Totton maintained a threat on the counter. Trey Anderson fired wide for The Bluebells before a real warning came for The Stags.
Yate substitute Liam Harding was unlucky to see his effort from range hit the crossbar. But The Stags replied quickly with a combative run from Whittingham, who managed to supply Sherborne who was forced wide and shot wide of the near post. With time ebbing away for Yate, they began to mount heavy pressure on the penalty area as the game entered the final fifteen minutes. Eventually HARDING was to score and set up an interesting finish to the game as just six minutes of normal time remained. However, The Stags were in no mood to generously share the points this afternoon and restored their two-goal cushion just three minutes later to settle the things once and for all and lay waste to the idea of a ‘tense finale’. Neil Williams played a lovely lobbed pass over the top of the defence for Curtis YOUNG to latch onto and the impressive Cherries-loanee did just that, beating the keeper one on one calmly to wrap up the game and ensure The Stags took all 3 points back home to Hampshire. FT 1-3
Today was an important game for The Stags in their quest to remain in the Southern League Division 1 South and West and they certainly didn’t shy away from the challenge, getting at their opponents from the off and looking hungry. Louis and the lads got everything they deserved today and should all be happy after a good day at the office, with some great performances throughout the side with Curtis Young, Neil Williams, Harry Medway and Charlie Gunson all coming away with big praise from the noisy contingent of travelling supporters.
The Stags move up to 18th place after registering their first ever win at Yate and scoring their first league away goals since October – destroying two unsavoury stats. Up next for Totton is a home game against mid-table Didcot Town (Saturday 25th February- 3pm) when they have another opportunity to gain 3 points and potentially venture further up the league table.
Stags Lineup: Searle, York, Oliver, Williams, Medway, Allen (c), Young, Gunson, Sherborne, Whittingham, Wilde.
Subs: Knight, Kimber, Prisk.
Adi Rose at Lodge Road.